A night in our house-
Daddy comes home from work and Caroline is usually taking her
late afternoon catnap. When she wakes, daddy gets to be the one to go grab her and say hello. She smiles and is so happy to see him. We eat an early dinner as a family. Caroline is now sampling/eating our food, so we try and prepare things that she will enjoy and be able to eat easily. We clean up from dinner and then have some family time.
Some days we go for a walk with the dogs, others we hang out in Caroline’s room for some playtime. Some days Caroline needs a bath, and others she gets quiet time with daddy. We always have our family time, though.
At around 6:30pm, Caroline starts getting ready for bed. We have a consistent routine:
– Caroline breastfeeds for the last time that day
– We then get her changed into her nighttime diaper and clothes
– Mama or daddy reads her a story (we alternate days)
– Sound machine goes on, lights go off and she has quiet time until we think she’s sleepy enough to go to bed (some days its only a couple of minutes, and others its 15 minutes)
We then give her lots of hugs and kisses, lay her down and say goodnight. Most days, Caroline falls asleep in a few minutes and we never hear from her again until 7am rolls around.
Some nights, mama and daddy watch a tv show or two, and some days we have dessert. Daddy and the puppies also fall asleep in a few minutes.
Then there’s mama. I have every opportunity to sleep and get some much needed rest, but I can’t! Caroline is sleeping and doesn’t need me…but there I am, wide awake. I lay in bed trying and trying to fall asleep, but it doesn’t work. Eventually, I might put the tv on, do something on my phone, or even get up and come back to bed later. Every night, though, I can’t help but wish someone had done sleep training with me! My parents did sleep training with my sister, but not with me. No surprise…she sleeps so well and I do not- I never have. I lay there and think about how hard it is for me to fall asleep, and how amazingly well my daughter has already mastered this incredibly useful skill. I feel so proud of her and I am so happy that she has this skill. It is something that I wish I could have.
I find myself thinking, “if she can do it, I should be able to as well”, and I close my eyes and give it a shot. Nope. Nothing. Still awake. Some things are so easily learned as a child, and are just incredibly hard once you are an adult! It’s like learning a new language- super easy for a child, super difficult for an adult.
My mind races at night. I get ideas for new blog posts and write them down, I think of things we need to finish around the house, things I want to teach Caroline, about that appointment I know I have but forgot to write down, etc. Nighttime has become my thinking time- that is if I can think over the sleeping sounds of my husband and the dogs taking large breaths and snoring away, Moose scratching the wall as he chases after a squirrel in his dreams, Chelsea whining as she chases the rabbits in hers, the baby monitor humming in my ear, and the occasional moan from Caroline in mid sleep. It’s noisy, but it’s our noise. Sometimes I think the noise keeps me up, but then I realized that I’d be up missing those noises if they were not there. They are comforting. They are family.